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Wrist Strength?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by jodathmorr, Jan 17, 2003.

  1. Man bass is exhausting. My wrist keeps getting tired when i play really agressive bass lines. I've been playing some Strokes and their is a note every like 16th. Sometimes I end up strumming every 3rd or 4th note because my wrist sorta "locks up" and goes all over the strings and sounds ones that shouldn't sound.

    Anyways I was wondering if this is normal and if i need to strengthen my wrist somehow (no lude things ;)). Are there things I can do to help myself play more agressivly and not get tired so fast?
  2. DarkMazda


    Jun 3, 2000
    which wrist?

    (This should be under "Technique" forum)

    try these

    1) ALWAYS stretch before you play. JUst hold your arm straight away from you (Like your telling someone to stop) and then pull your fingers backwards and stretch it for about 10 seconds then let it go. AFter you let go, shake your hands to get blood through.

    2) Try doing Push ups. Not the usual way, but doing it with your hands in a shaped like a fist. Like your holding a steering wheel in a car at the left and right | | <-- like that.. This will keep blood flow through your hands and still work out your wrists.

    3) Practice

    4) I don't think this is your wrists thats getting tired. If its in the right hand, its more than likely that your using the wrong technique on your right hand which doesn't let that much blood flow to your fingers. or the fact that your forearms are getting tired.. the tendents from the fingers are directly connected ot the forearms when you pluck or use a pick.. just keep doing exercises. Like playing constant 16ths for about a minute or so and just keep doing excerises and you should have more endurance later.. its like working out, always keep working at it

    5) Why do you need to dig hard? If its because you need to.. try lowering your action and playing softly, this will use less arm strength and you will be able to play fast without putting alot of strength for each note

  3. I use my left hand to strum and the right to finger. Sorry about the board mixup.
  4. DarkMazda


    Jun 3, 2000
    so your a lefty? if so, just do the things i told u mirrored (left = right, right = left)

  5. zombywoof5050


    Dec 20, 2001
    Are you bending your wrist excessively?
    You might try the Gary Willis approach of making sure to keep the wrists straight with the back of the hand remaining in a straight line with the forearm.
  6. Gary Willis approach? Can you give me a website or article about it?
  7. Another very key ingredient of Gary Willis' posture is to hold the bass on your "opposite" leg like a classical guitarist. This makes access to up the neck notes much easier also.
  8. Try: www.garywillis.com Not sure if all that's there or not (I'm on my way out the door...) but his video shows all of this in detail.

    I have tendonitus. Do the aforementioned stretches but add, open hand facing down and closed fist facing down. Hold your arms straight out not above shoulder level. If you hurt, ice up and down your arms for about 30 seconds after playing. Or until your arm feels cold/numb. Don't go longer. If you're playing in that thrash bass at your knees manner STOP right now-FOREVER. It's an incredibly stupid way to cripple yourself permanently! Read repetitive strain injury books from the library. Don't go where I am today it sucks! I'd be very wary of push ups. NEVER EVER do them the traditional way with hands bend backwards. A simple fall with your hands in that position can give you permanent tendonitus injuries. I'm not a doctor and all of this is just my opinion but some reading will enlighten you as to what is good/bad. Talk with your doctor if pain continues...

    Willis' method has been a huge help to me. Depending on the balance of which bass I'm playing I may or may not use the classical guitar position although it does offer more benefits to the player IMHO.

    Gotta run! Good luck.